Police Case Against Dr. Anahita Pandole For Rash Driving

On 5th November, 2022, the police in Maharashtra’s Palghar district registered a case for negligent and rash driving, against renowned gynaecologist, Dr. Anahita Pandole (55), who was driving the Mercedes that crashed near Surya River Charoti bridge, on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad highway, killing  industrialist Cyrus Mistry and his co-passenger, Jehangir Pandole, who were riding in the back seat of the car, on 4th September 2022. Dr. Anahita Pandole, who was driving the car, and her husband – Darius Pandole (60), who was in the co-driver’s seat, were seriously injured.

As per a Police Release, during the investigation, witnesses were questioned and reports were obtained from the Regional Transport Office and Mercedes Benz India Pune. “Based on the reports and probe it has been established that the accident was the result of rash and negligent driving,” and hence a case was registered against Dr. Pandole, it added. Balasaheb Patil, Superintendent of Police, Palghar district, confirmed in a news report, “An FIR has been registered against Dr. Anahita Pandole under sections 304A (causing death by negligence), 279 (rash driving or riding on a public way), 337 (causing hurt to any person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life, or the personal safety of others), 338 (causing grievous hurt to any person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life, or the personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code, and other sections of the Motor Vehicle Act at Kasa Police Station.”

While Dr. Anahita Pandole is currently recuperating at a hospital in Mumbai and is yet to record her statement in connection with the case, her husband, Darius, who was discharged last week from the Hospital, has recorded his statement with the Palghar Police. He underwent a surgery on his forearm and a ‘maxo facial’ surgery. He was also battling infection due to the severity of his injuries. His statement was recorded at his South Mumbai residence for one-and-a-half hours, during which he gave details of the accident, in which he lost his brother – Jahangir Pandole.

As per reports, in his statement, Darius Pandole said that Dr. Anahita was driving the Mercedes-Benz car when they were on their way to Mumbai. A car, which was ahead of their vehicle, went to the second lane from the third and Anahita also tried to follow the same. When she tried to take the car to the second lane from the third, she found that there was a truck on the right side (in the second lane) due to which she was not able to merge into that lane, which turned narrow near Surya river bridge, thus crashing into the parapet of the bridge.

The place where the car crashed is an accident black spot. The possible misjudgment of the driver, sudden narrowing of the lane on the highway and possible overtaking were relevant factors which led to the fatal accident. The poor road design on the bridge has caused many fatal accidents on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad highway. The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) officials have put up warning signs, but they are yet to fix the faulty parapet.

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